Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Fast Draw water bottle is leaving me dry

Stingy valve
Today's run (treadmill): 25 minutes

I tend to over-plan for races, sweating the details a week or so ahead of time. I do this in order to minimize race day surprises. Detailed planning generally works out for the best when I do this, and the bigger the race, the more I plan. One area of focus this week is hydration. Should I carry water? Gatorade? Nuun electrolyte mix? Should I use water stations instead? After experimentation, I've decided to go with water + gels. That seems right.

Still, the method of water conveyance remains undecided. After my Amphipod handbottle began to leak, I replaced it with an Ultimate Direction Fast Draw unit. It has an insulated wrap, gel pocket and rubber bite valve. When I put it in my hand, it seemed enormous, but that also meant I would be able to carry five more ounces of water than I could with my Amphipod.

I thought I'd try a test run with the UD bottle, in experior, as I wound down my training this week. When filled, the bottle seemed even more massive, but I kept an open mind. I ran on the treadmill this morning because of the rain, and carrying this water bottle made things slightly more complicated. The weight of the bottle concerned me, and I began to wonder if I'd want to carry it for two-plus hours on Sunday.

About a minute into my run I took a sip of water. Actually, I tried to take a sip, but I couldn't draw much water from the opening. I became concerned thinking, "How hard should it be to get water from a device that's specifically made to deliver water?" The answer was very, very hard. I put the bottle aside for the remainder of the run and decided on the spot to use water stations, rather than carry water, during the race

When my wife came in to use the treadmill, I mentioned my trouble with the UD bottle and she promised to look at it. She tends to do better than me with mechanical challenges. Since then, she has figured out the method to get water from the bottle (not so easy, actually) but I am sticking with my decision. As I recall, there are numerous water stops along the way, so I'm not risking much by running bottle-free.

I'm disappointed with my experience this morning but this is why we test!

2 comments:

  1. Read your post and wanted to suggest you check out my Simple Hydration Water Bottle. It holds 13 oz. and hooks onto your waistband or a race belt. It's a very simple way to take fluid on the run without having to carry a bottle or wear a bulky hydration belt. Good luck with with your running and future hydration needs. www.simplehydration.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Interesting design. Could be worth a try.

    ReplyDelete

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